Olympics Through the Years


Manav Singh, Newsdecoder Ambassador

In the mid 1980s, back when St. Andrew’s dress code was a pastel shirt and khaki pants, the middle school organized the first Olympics. It was a field day held on the old south campus football field. Teams created banners and decorated t-shirts with fabric paint. Each team created a cheer and assembled in a pyramid. “It was glorious. It was a thrilling triumph of human ingenuity,” incoming Head of the Middle School and SA alumnus, Buck Cooper, said. “Legends were forged. Heroes emerged.”

While this was just a test run for the event, it laid the foundation of what the Olympics would later become. The concept of getting the middle school together and competing in various events was started during this period. 

However, sometime between the 1990s and early 2000s, St. Andrew’s decided to stop the Olympics. Instead, the Middle School Olympics were replaced by “Street Jam,” a lip sync contest and carnival. It was a lovely event that many people enjoyed but had a different purpose than the previous Olympics. So in 2016, the administration decided “Street Jam” had run its course and decided to revive the Olympics. While the concept has been reworked and changed from what it once was, the essence of the Olympics still remains the same. As Cooper describes it, “A number of potentially scandalous events have been eliminated. However, the motivation for the Olympics is still the same-to bring together the middle school community.” Additionally, the Olympics is a time when the older students can get to know their younger peers.  “8th graders [have] a chance to exert some leadership and good influence on younger students,” Cooper said,  “and everyone [can have] a fun day to spend time together outside in the Mississippi springtime.”